The Harry Black Picture Book Award

It is with great pleasure that the Canadian Children’s Book Centre announces a new children’s literature award, the Harry Black Picture Book Award. The award will honour the best French-language Canadian book for children, and comes with a $5,000 cash prize. The first award will be announced in Montreal at this year’s Prix TD Gala in November. The Canadian Children’s Book Centre is both honoured and proud to coordinate this new and exciting award.

This award is being established to honour the memory of the late Harry Black. Among his many accomplishments, Mr. Black was a long-time and beloved director of UNICEF Canada. An author and illustrator in his own right, he loved children’s books and truly believed that Canadian publishing was extremely important to the country. He also believed that the French- and English-language publishing worlds should work more closely together. For his work on behalf of the world’s children and for his service to the nation, Mr. Black was awarded the Order of Canada in 2003.

Mr. Black very much appreciated the work of talented French-language Canadian children’s book writers and illustrators, of which he met many, so his friends feel that he would greatly approve of this new award in his name that will support these creators. The award will be given to outstanding picture books in which the author and illustrator achieve artistic and literary unity. The book must give equal consideration to the text or storyline (in the case of wordless books) and the visual material, and there should be a seamless integration of text/storyline, illustration and design.

To be eligible, a book must have been published between January 1 and December 31, 2016. Both the author and illustrator must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada for at least two years. The book should be aimed at young readers aged three to eight years old. Eligible genres are fiction, non-fiction and poetry.

For a complete list of eligibility requirements please go to